DeSoto builder goes green with new home - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Chip Washington

DeSoto builder goes green with new home

OLIVE BRANCH, MS (WMC-TV) - A Mid-South homebuilder is putting up neighborhoods in Mississippi he says will help save the environment.

Developer David Bridgforth hopes the 1,800 square foot home he is building in Olive Branch will be the first of many that will encourage home buyers to go green.

"The thinking is that right now, with times the way they are, that anything we can do to put money back in peoples' pockets to make housing more affordable is something that gives us a chance to reach out to people and help them buy a home," Bridgforth said.

Bridgforth is the first developer in Olive Branch to build a house in ways that are supposed to reduce energy consumption and improve air quality. Builders are using many recyclable materials, especially the insulation, which consists of ground up newspapers and old phone books.

The finished product will cost just under $180,000, which Bridgforth says is the average for the area. Building a more energy efficient home will increase his out of pocket costs, but he hopes it will pay off in additional sales. 

"We're right now reducing our margins and reducing our profit in the interest of trying to move more units," he said.

In the end, Bridgforth expects any potential home buyer to see immediate cost savings in their wallet.

"If your in a home that's $200 dollars a month average utility costs, it saves you $720 dollars a year in utilities," he said.

Bridgforth says that if the 1,800 square foot, two story home does sell, his plan is to build at least 300 more in the area - if there is a demand for them.  He says the green movement is still relatively new, but adds that if people are looking for immediate cost savings, the new designs may become much more popular as time goes by.

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